Footballer Ched Evans has told a court a woman who has accused him of rape was not too drunk to consent and was “enjoying herself” during sex.
The Chesterfield striker denies raping a 19-year-old woman at a Denbighshire hotel, in May 2011.
Mr Evans, 27, was found guilty of rape at Caernarfon Crown Court in 2012, but his conviction was quashed in April.
He told Cardiff Crown Court his behaviour was “not the best” but not criminal.
Mr Evans said from the stand he stopped having sex with the complainant after his friend Clayton McDonald left the Rhuddlan Premier Inn hotel room on 30 May, 2011, where the three had been having sex.
His barrister, Judy Khan QC, asked Mr Evans how the complainant seemed when they were having sex.
‘Got a bird’
He replied: “From what I could see she seemed like she was having sex and enjoying herself.”
When asked if the woman was too drunk to consent to sex, he replied “no”.
Miss Khan QC said; “Did it appear she knew what was going on around her?”
“Yes,” he replied.
“If she had been too drunk to consent would you have had sex with her?” Miss Khan asked.
“No,” he replied.
“Did you rape [the complainant], Mr Evans?” she asked.
“No,” he replied.
The court heard the defendant followed Mr McDonald, with whom he has previously played at Manchester City, to the Premier Inn after a night out in Rhyl on 30 May, 2011.
Mr Evans said he got a text from Mr McDonald saying he had “got a bird”.
He said him, his younger brother, Ryan Roberts, 23, and another of their friends got a taxi to the hotel.
Mr Evans said he got a key to the room in which Mr McDonald was with the complainant – a room he had paid for – from reception.
When asked by his barrister why he let himself into the room, Mr Evans said he was “just being childish”.
When asked what he thought was happening in the room, he replied: “I didn’t know for sure what was happening in the room.
“I thought they might be having sex and I could not be sure what was happening but I was just being childish.”
Mr Evans added: “When I walked in, the door slammed and they [Mr McDonald and the complainant] both looked at me and Clay looked at her and said: ‘Can my mate join in?”
“Did she answer?” Miss Khan asked.
“She looked at me and said, ‘yes’,” Mr Evans said.
He said the girl later asked him to perform a sex act on her before they had intercourse.
When asked how she responded, he said: “She was just making noises like she was enjoying herself.”
Mr Evans said his brother and their friend were “giggling” at the window, before a light was switched off in the room.
He said the complainant appeared to be “taking the lead” during sex.
He said Mr McDonald – who was cleared of rape at the original trial – then left the hotel room.
Mr Evans – formerly of Manchester City, Norwich and Sheffield United – said the situation then “became real” and he stopped having sex with the woman.
He said: “The situation had just become real – that I was cheating on my girlfriend.”
When asked why that was, he said: “I can only describe it as being caught up in the moment. I was just in a room, with a girl.
“It was more real. I was actually cheating on my girlfriend.”
Mr Evans told the court he did not surreptitiously leave the hotel after the sexual encounter, as the prosecution had suggested, but left through a fire exit because he knew it to be the most direct way to his preferred route home.
He said: “I did not sneak off. I had already talked to Gavin Burrough [the hotel receptionist], I had shown him my driving licence.”
Mr Evans recounted how he was shaken when later questioned by police over the alleged offence.
He said: “I was frightened because of what was being said to me.
“I was locked up in the police station. I was just scared. I could not remember anything. I could not remember at this point my mobile phone number.
“It was difficult, because I had had a drink, to remember every single thing.”
In cross-examination Mr Evans said his behaviour was “not the best” but not criminal.
Simon Medland QC, prosecuting, said: “One of the features of this case, may I suggest, Mr Evans, is that during this episode you never knew the complainant’s name?”
“Yes,” Mr Evans replied.
“You were having unprotected sex with a girl you had never met, in a hotel room, while other people looked in through the window. You never even knew her name.”
“Looking back,” Mr Evans said, “my behaviour was not the best and, on reflection, I should not have behaved that way.”
He accepted he had met the complainant a week before the alleged incident but could not remember that occasion.
In cross-examination, Mr Evans denied leaving via the fire exit to “cover his tracks” and to give him some “wiggle room” in his story by leaving separately from Mr McDonald.
Mr Medland asked Mr Evans how it was the complainant appeared very drunk in CCTV footage before the alleged offence, and yet he claimed she was “in control” enough to consent to sex.
Mr Evans said: “In the room she was not all over the place. On the CCTV you could see she was drunk but she was not behaving like that in the hotel room.”
The trial has adjourned for the day and will resume on Tuesday.
Article source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-37610609